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Are Wasps (“Yellow Jackets”) a Problem for Your Business?

Posted in Wasps

Aggressive Wasps in Late Summer

This time of year, Wasps specifically “Yellow Jackets” can become a real problem for restaurant owners and other commercial businesses in Ontario, Canada. It’s not uncommon for restaurant patios to get shut down because of aggressive wasps irritating guests. This happens during certain times of the year due to various factors related to their life cycle, environmental conditions, and resource availability. Here are some reasons why wasps might be more aggressive during late summer or early fall.

  1. Colony Maturity. As the summer progresses, wasp colonies grow larger and more mature. With an increasing number of individuals in the colony, competition for resources such as food and space can escalate, leading to more aggressive behavior.
  2. Natural Lifecycle. Towards the end of summer, the wasp colony’s focus shifts from raising worker wasps to producing new reproductive individuals, such as queens and males. This change in priorities can lead to shifts in behavior, including increased aggressiveness to protect reproductive individuals.
  3. Resource Scarcity. Late summer and early fall can be a time of reduced food availability for wasps. Natural food sources, such as nectar and insects, might become scarcer as plants stop producing nectar and insects decrease in numbers. This scarcity can lead to increased aggression as wasps compete for limited resources. This makes what you’re eating on the patio more interesting and sometimes worth fighting for.
  4. Approaching Winter. Wasps are cold-blooded insects and are more active in warmer temperatures. As the weather starts to cool down and winter approaches, wasps become more frantic in their search for food to sustain the colony. This urgency can contribute to heightened aggression.
  5. Predator Pressure. Many animals, including birds, spiders, and other insects, also become more active in the late summer and early fall as they prepare for winter. This increased predation pressure can lead to heightened defensive behaviors in wasps.
  6. Nest Disturbances. Human activities, such as landscaping, outdoor gatherings, and food consumption, can inadvertently disturb wasp nests. When their nests are disturbed, wasps can perceive a threat and become more aggressive in defense of their colony. Yellow Jacket nests can be both above and below ground, so watchout when cutting your grass or playing outside in bare feet.

Help With Wasps “Yellow Jackets”

As you can see, a wasp’s life isn’t always easy. It’s important to remember that individual wasp behavior can vary, and not all wasps will exhibit aggressive behavior. However, it’s a good idea to exercise caution and avoid disturbing wasp nests during this time of year to minimize the risk of getting stung. However, if a wasp nest is affecting your business and you need to deal with it, it’s often best to contact a professional pest control service such as Sentinel Pest Control. The internet is full of video’s of less than successful attempts to remove wasp nests as they are more resilient than you might think, especially as a team.